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Tuesday, May 15, 2007

Reincarnation of Clever Hans

It looks like our old friend Clever Hans has gotten himself reincarnated as a lovable Golden Retriever. Perhaps he thought that his mathematical fraud would be less conspicuous if performed by man's best friend.
Hans, the famous counting horse, fooled audiences and skeptics alike for years until someone tried a simple test. The equine savant could do just about any calculation as long as his handler knew both the problem and the correct solution. If the card was switched, Hans gave the answer that his handler expected instead. The handler didn't even know he was doing it and I'm sure was devastated to find out that Hans was a cheater.
What do you want to bet that something similar is happening here?

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